SeedCo, the leading seed house in the country, launched its 2018 prize giving ceremony yesterday for all farmers who participated in this year’s ’11 Ton Plus Club’ contest and the entire farming community at large. The mega event saw all the participants (up to 50 farmers with at least 10ha under maize) in this year’s competition receiving tablet computers, while the first and second runners up went home with a Nissan Single Cab and a 60 Horsepower Tractor.
The company’s Managing Director Denias Zaranyika showed profound esteem for the women who participated in the competition and managed to be in the top 50 ranking. Figures showed that women’s participation accounted for more than 10 percent.
Among them was Leticia Tapfumaneyi from Mash East who ranked 9th with a yield of 13,43 tonnes per Ha and Grace Hamah from Mash Central who ranked 12th with a yield of 12,85 tonnes per Ha.
“I am encouraged by women’s participation in this competition while that of the youth is also significant. Women guarantee livelihoods, especially in rural areas and this is a fact. As a result of their great efforts in agricultural production, women help guarantee self-sustenance at both household and national levels,” said Zaranyika.
The seed company told Business Times that despite most farmers being able to now break the 11 tonne threshold with great ease, it will continue to maintain the threshold at 11 tonnes per hectare to bring more farmers at the same level of productivity.
In a bid to improve productivity, SeedCo has extended its arms by sponsoring learning trips for selected farmers to attend various International Agricultural Exhibitions and shows. Concurrently, the company also introduced new products such as the SeedCo Farmers Guide and a new SeedCo Agronomy App which are meant to deepen its reach to local farmers.
“This year we sponsored over 20 farmers to go to NAMPO, which is the largest agricultural expo in the Southern hemisphere held annually in South Africa. In the past we have sponsored trips to South America and Europe,” added Zaranyika.
Deputy Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Water, Culture and Rural Resettlement, Vangelis Haritatos, commended the company’s efforts that have been instrumental in increasing the national output and ensuring a more feasible business in Agriculture. He added that his ministry is at full disposal should the seed house require assistance.
“SeedCo has devised very good seeds that actually help and assist our farmers with yields. And that’s very important because its not only helping our farmers to grow and farm, but it is also ensures a feasible business because if the yields are poor, that means it is not feasible for a farmer to even farm in the first place,”
“We are very grateful to SeedCo. They have actually changed lives of a lot of people. I also commend the professor. The company has put so much into research and it shows the commitment and investment into moving our country forward,” he added.